Husqvarna‘s worldwide shipment totals were down 23% in 2011 but the numbers don’t tell the whole story for the BMW-owned brand, especially when it comes to the North American market.
According to BMW’s 2011 fiscal year report, Husqvarna delivered 9,286 units in 2011, compared to 12,066 units in 2010. What those figures do not explain is BMW intentionally reduced supply to dealerships to help clear excess inventory. BMW says actual deliveries to customers totaled 11,243 units.
News in the North American market were a bright spot on Husqvarna’s year-end numbers, with an increase of over 60% in retail registrations and the highest sales figures since BMW acquired Husqvarna in 2007.
“The U.S. market was definitely a bright spot on Husqvarna’s global scope in 2011,” says Kris Odwarka, president of Husqvarna Motorcycles North America (HMNA). “Our retail registrations were up over 60% for 2011, and additionally, in our relevant segments of off-road and dual-purpose, we increased by 66%.”
Husqvarna also saw a 20% increase in the size of its North American dealer network. Dealers also had access to Husqvarna’s 2012 models sooner than usual.
“Putting a number value on our dealer network doesn’t reflect the quality of our dealers, which is far more important than the sheer quantity,” said Revelle Harrison, HMNA national sales manager. “We’ve been fortunate enough to partner with great dealerships in the past several months. We’re proud to be able to support them with a solid network of field staff now in place, and top-level parts fulfillment through BMW.”
BMW’s financial services arm also helped boost Husqvarna by supporting various sales promotions.
Husqvarna North America is expecting a good year in 2012, with sales this January already seeing a 122% increase from the same month in 2011. Looking even further ahead, Husqvarna says it will update all of its current U.S. product offerings by 2015. Husqvarna has also shown a number of concept models over the past year that are expected to enter production, such as the Baja concept recently unveiled in New York, and the Strada revealed in Paris in November.